Chapter 7 Energy without end

Chapter 7 – Energy without end

169-171. I write about the destruction of the Selar Farm Site of Special Scientific Interest to make way for an open cast coal mine. This extract from a Parliamentary debate at the time conveys some sense of the discussion then going on about the adequacy of laws to protect key wildlife habitats. http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/lords/1996/mar/27/selar-farm-sssis

170-171. The Nant Helen mine has continued to stimulate environmental activism. Whereas in the 1990s this was in large part due to wildlife impacts more recently it has been because of climate change. http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2010/08/457201 More on the mine can be gleaned from the website of Celtic Energy http://www.coal.com/operations/operations-nant-helen-extension/

171. On the league table of which countries have contributed most carbon emissions on a per person basis since 1850 see this excellent summary published by The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2011/apr/21/countries-responsible-climate-change 

174. I mention research by the Potsdam Institute. For this source see: Meinshausen, M. et al., (2009). Greenhouse-gas emission targets for limiting global warming to 2 °C, Nature 458, pp.1158-1162. Find that on-line at:

174. For details about the work of Carbon Tracker, including various reports and press releases, see: http://www.carbontracker.org/

174. The credibility of the arguments presented by Carbon Tracker have been confirmed by the Bank of England launching an investigation into the risks posed by carbon based stocks to the financial system: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/189f21d8-7737-11e4-a082-00144feabdc0.html?siteedition=uk#axzz3KiyJImAk

The Financial Times has followed this logic to conclude that ExxonMobil and Shell would cease to exist in their current form in 35 years http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/c542393c-7dbf-11e4-bb0a-00144feabdc0.html#axzz3LJEr35nL

175. I cite the World Bank report called Turn Down the Heat. World Bank (2012) Turn down the heat : why a 4°C warmer world must be avoided. World Bank. Washington DC. See that here:


This work has been updated and a 2014 report can be found here: http://www.pwc.co.uk/assets/pdf/low-carbon-economy-index-2014.pdf

176. You can find Christine Lagarde’s speech here: https://www.imf.org/external/np/speeches/2013/012313.htm

177-178 I mention several organisations that have begun to divest from fossil fuel companies. In relation to Storebrand see: http://blueandgreentomorrow.com/2014/01/27/major-pension-fund-storebrand-divests-from-a-further-10-fossil-fuel-firms/ 




178. I describe the Richborough power station towers. My visit took place in November 2011. The towers have subsequently been demolished.

179-180. For more on the Thanet and London Array offshore wind farms see these sources: http://corporate.vattenfall.co.uk/projects/operational-wind-farms/thanet/ 


My description of the construction phase of the latter project is from a visit in November 2011.

182.  Wind power generation figures for 2013: 

182. The reduction of carbon dioxide by 11 million tonnes per year was based upon figures for 2013 derived from this source.  It has since been updated and current data is available here: http://www.renewableuk.com/en/renewable-energy/wind-energy/uk-wind-energy-database/figures-explained.cfm

182.  The renewables obligation figure of £30:

182. For the research sources that lie behind the numbers I use as to bird deaths caused by wind turbines in the USA as compared with other sources of mortality, see this site: http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/green-science/wind-turbine-kill-birds.htm

183. For my source on the scale of investment into British renewable energy projects see Renewable UK, (2014). Election Manifesto 2015 - Securing our renewable energy future. Renewable UK, London. http://www.renewableuk.com/en/utilities/search-results.cfm?keyword=election+manifesto See page 33

183. For my source on jobs and potential for jobs growth in the wind power industry see Renewable UK, (2013). Working for a Green Britain & Northern Ireland 2013-23. Renewable UK 2013. See more at: http://www.renewableuk.com/en/publications/reports.cfm/working-green-britain#sthash.diKx4Or7.dpuf

183-184. I mention the new solar array installed on Blackfriars Bridge in London. For pictures and more background on that, including a video, see: http://www.solarcentury.com/uk/case-studies/blackfriars/

185. Jeremy Leggett talks about a ‘death spiral’ for the traditional utility companies arising from clean and renewable technologies. Some companies are changing their strategic direction as a result. See for example http://www.jeremyleggett.net/2014/12/e-on-to-quit-gas-and-coal-and-focus-on-renewable-energy/

186. For numbers on the impact on jobs in the UK solar power sector caused by changing policy see: http://www.solarpowerportal.co.uk/news/decc_predicts_a_third_of_uk_solar_workers_will_lose_their_jobs

187. I mention the LIMPET device installed on Islay to generate power from waves. See this for a little more detail: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/1032148.stm

187-188. Pelamis Wind Power http://www.pelamiswave.com/wave-power

188-190. Swansea Tidal Lagoon http://www.tidallagoonswanseabay.com/ 
See press release section for more on Prudential’s generic viagra free decision to invest.

191. Tidal stream device installed at Strangford Lough http://www.seageneration.co.uk

191. Note that in relation to the question as to whether there is a ceiling for renewable energy that many countries have committed to total decarbonisation by 2050 http://www.rtcc.org/2014/12/09/what-chance-of-zero-carbon-emissions-by-2050/ 
This can only be achieved through among other things a massive increase in renewable power generation, which is technically feasible.

192. See this link for an opinion from the Committee on Climate Change as to the maximum level of renewable energy penetration by 2030. http://www.theccc.org.uk/blog/government-should-support-the-development-of-a-portfolio-of-renewables-to-2030/ 
This scenario was published in 2011. 
Their estimates as generic viagra free to the contribution of renewables are set against the context of what they describe as the near complete decarbonisation of the power sector by 2030 http://archive.theccc.org.uk/aws2/4th%20Budget/4th-Budget_Exec%20Summary.pdf 

192. For proportion of wind-generated electricity used in Denmark in 2013 see: http://www.energinet.dk/EN/El/Nyheder/Sider/2013-var-et-rekordaar-for-dansk-vindkraft.aspx

193. For more on what Jaguar Landrover is doing on battery development see this: http://newsroom.jaguarlandrover.com/en-gb/jlr-corp/news/2013/09/jlr_advanced-powertrain_040913/ 
They are not alone. Many other vehicle manufacturers are going in the same direction. 

193. On the externalities (wider non-market impacts) that arise from fossil fuel combustion see for example http://www.ucsusa.org/clean_energy/our-energy-choices/coal-and-other-fossil-fuels/the-hidden-cost-of-fossil.html#.VKllHkszCDU 

193. Regarding fossil fuel subsidies being five times bigger than those that back renewables, see for example: Whitley, S. (2013). Time to change the game. Fossil fuel subsidies and climate. ODI. London. See that here: http://www.odi.org/sites/odi.org.uk/files/odi-assets/publications-opinion-files/8668.pdf

194. For more on the decision by Chancellor George Osborne to freeze the carbon floor price at the 2014 level, see: http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/2335174/budget-2014-osbornes-carbon-price-freeze-sparks-green-investment-fears 


194. More details about the Forewind Consortium proposals to build in excess of seven gigawatts of wind power on the Dogger Bank see this source: http://www.forewind.co.uk/dogger-bank/overview.html 
A simulation of what this scheme would look like is included here. Technical and economic background is presented in these two documents: http://www.forewind.co.uk/uploads/GENECON_DBOWF_Technical%20Paper_CLEAN_FINALv2_130314.pdf

195. I mention that the Committee on Climate Change has warned that shale gas fracking on a large scale might not be compatible with climate change policy: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2012/dec/04/gas-strategy-plan-z-climate-adviser 

197. On the rate of renewable energy growth in 2012 see for example: http://www.worldwatch.org/growth-global-solar-and-wind-energy-continues-outpace-other-technologies-0 

197. Regarding the scaling up of wind and solar power in China see this very good overview from Nature: http://www.nature.com/news/economics-manufacture-renewables-to-build-energy-security-1.15847 
On China reaching over 90 GW of installed wind power capacity in 2013 see: http://cleantechnica.com/2014/02/06/2013-wind-energy-installations-stall-u-s-surge-china/ 

198. The UK falls down the league table of countries most attractive to investors in renewable energy: http://blueandgreentomorrow.com/2014/09/17/uk-at-all-time-low-in-attractiveness-for-renewable-energy-investment/ 

198. Regarding the climate change threat faced by the marsh fritillary butterfly (and indeed other wildlife) see for example: http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/Research%20briefings%20and%20fact%20sheets/SB09-28.pdf